Suns Co-Owner Jahm Najafi Called For Robert Sarver To Resign

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Earlier this week, the NBA released the findings of its independent investigation into Phoenix Suns owner Robert Sarver, confirming numerous allegations he fostered a hostile work environment, making racist and sexist comments to employees over his 18 year tenure with the team.

The league handed down a $10 million fine to Sarver along with a one-year suspension from being around the team, which Adam Silver attempted to defend when pressed on why Sarver’s punishment was so much lighter than Donald Sterling’s years ago. Silver’s explanation was that Sarver has “evolved” since entering the league in 2004 as an owner, which is questionable at best considering the allegations have run up through 2017, but also noted that owners have different standards and rights afforded to them given their stature. While the league tried to walk that statement back, it was impossible to ignore and plenty have come out against the league’s light punishment, most notably LeBron James and Chris Paul

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While players can apply considerable pressure to the league, the biggest voice so far to speak out against Sarver still being allowed to own the Suns is one of his co-owners, Jahm Najafi, who owns the second largest stake in the team and issued a lengthy statement condemning Sarver’s conduct and calling on him to resign as owner.

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It’s an incredibly strong statement from a co-owner and offers the first indication that there could be internal pressure on Sarver to sell his portion of the team. Najafi notes he does not want to buy Sarver’s share but would work to find someone who could take over the majority stake and fix the workplace culture of the organization to ensure this doesn’t happen again.



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